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Is Sugar Alcohol Keto?

Is Sugar Alcohol Keto?

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Is Sugar Alcohol Keto?

Everyday Keto is becoming more and more popular and people are avoiding sugar and simple carbohydrate to make their body to lose weight. Keto diet mainly follows a strict diet of 70-80 percent fat, 15-20 percent protein, 5-10 percent carbs. So, many people replace sugars with artificial sugar and sugar substitutes to maintain their sugar and curb count down.

One of the most popular sweeteners that are marketed as sugar-free processed food is Sugar Alcohol. But, the question is whether sugar alcohol Keto?

To answer this question, first we have to understand what exactly is sugar alcohol? 

Sugar alcohol is basically a sugar alternative containing fewer calories and won’t increase the blood sugar level. Chemically, sugar alcohols are sugar molecules with an attached alcohol group. Sugar alcohols or polyols are reduced calorie sweeteners that provide calories (approximately 2kcal/g). They are of less energy dense compared to natural sources of sugar due to their incomplete metabolism. Sugar alcohols can be classified under carbohydrate group.

Sugar alcohols are found in some fruits and vegetables. But, mostly they processed from other sugar, such as glucose, corn starch and sucrose. These sugar alcohols are less sweet than sugar and can create a cooling effect in your mouth. That’s why, manufacturers combine sugar alcohols with either artificial sweeteners or any other low-calorie sweeteners to cover up the sweet taste.

Types of Sugar alcohol

There are many types of sugar alcohol that are used as sweeteners. They are different from in each other in respect of taste, calorie content and health impact.

1. Xylitoil

The most common sugar alcohol which is found in sugar free chewing gums, mints and oral care products like toothpaste. This one is as sweet as sugar but the calorie content is less than 40 percent.


2. Erythritol

This considered to have an amazing taste and is produced by fermenting glucose and corn-starch. Contains 70 percent of the sweetness of sugar but have 5 percent of the calories. Mainly used as a sweetener in low-calorie foods and those products that come from health-conscious manufacturers.


3. Sorbitol

It has a cooling effect. Contains 60 percent of the calories and is a common ingredient for sugar-free foods and drinks, frozen desserts.


4. Isomalt

It has 2 calories per gram and contains 40-45 percent of sweetness of sucrose. Mainly found in toffee, lollipop, and cough drops.


5. Malitol

Processed form of the sugar maltose which has a very similar taste and mouthfeel as regular sugar. It is 90 percent as sweet as sugar but contains half of the calorie. Though the product claims to be sugar-free but the body absorbs some of this sugar alcohol which causes the blood sugar spikes. Malitol is found in chocolate, chewing gum, ice cream, etc.

How Sugar alcohol work?

Sugar alcohol cannot be completely absorbed by your body. When sugar alcohol is partly absorbed in the small intestine, the remaining unabsorbed sugar alcohol can move to your large intestine and will never make it to your blood stream.

Sugar alcohol tend to produce lower rate of response to glucose than fructose, sucrose or glucose.

The glycemic index is a relative ranking of carbohydrates in food which states how they will affect blood glucose level. Consumption of foods that are high on the GI can lead to obesity and metabolism problems.


Anything less than 55 is considered to be low glycemic.

To find out Net carbs In your food

Total carbohydrate – half of Sugar Alcohol= net carbohydrate

In this way, you can keep a track on your carbohydrate intake.

Health benefits of Sugar Alcohol

Restriction of energy development

Sugar alcohols take time to get absorbed in the body, also they don’t get fully absorbed. Once the process of absorption is complete, very little amount of energy is left to convert to energy.

Management of diabetes

As sugar alcohols get partially absorbed, they can’t initiate the same amount of insulin response as regular sugar. This, in turn, will help to regulate the blood sugar level.

Oral hygiene

Excessive sugar consumption can lead to tooth decay. Sugar alcohol can help you to get away from the problem. Xylitol is quit famous for its reaction on oral bacteria.  That’s why chewing gums and tooth-paste contain high amount of Xylitol.

Lose weight

Sugar alcohols can be used in low calorie and low carbohydrate based diets, as they can replace the more energy dense carbohydrate sugars. This can lead to lowering of total energy or total calorie of the food. That’s why sugar alcohols are useful for those people who want to lose weight or are trying to control the weight.

Side effects of Sugar Alcohol

Digestive issues

As we know that sugar alcohols are partially absorbed, so some of them get fermented in the large intestine by bacteria. Consumption of extra sugar alcohol can cause gas, digestive disorder, bloating and cramping.

Fluctuating blood sugar

Consumption of excessive sugar alcohol can lead to fluctuation of your blood sugar level. So, one needs to monitor the blood sugar along with the consumption of Sugar alcohol.

Now you know everything about Sugar Alcohol. Now the main question comes

Is Sugar Alcohol Keto?

Maintain the blood sugar is chief for a Keto diet. One should never ignore the food quality and things that can have long term effects on your body like sugar alcohols.

Though some sugar alcohols won’t necessarily affect your blood sugar level but there are many other aspects to see before considering them as a part of a healthy Keto diet.

One study was done on products containing normal sugar and products which have Malitol. The study was done to look into the short-term digestive problem caused by them. They found out that people faced acid reflux, increased rate of bowel movement during the process and it was higher on products containing Malitol.

Erythritol is one sugar alcohol that is pretty easy to digest and don’t increase blood sugar level. On the other hand, Malitol can. So, it depends whether sugar alcohol can be a part of Keto diet.

Before considering to add sugar alcohol to your diet, please consult a doctor for better result.

Also read: How Much Sugar Can You Have On Keto?

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